Assessment of the biochemical methane potential of in-house and outdoor stored pig and dairy cow manure by evaluating chemical composition and storage conditions

Waste Manag. 2023 Aug 1:168:14-24. doi: 10.1016/j.wasman.2023.05.031. Epub 2023 Jun 3.


Biogas production is a suitable option for producing energy from dairy and pig manure types. During manure storage, organic matter degradation results in methane emissions decreasing the potential biogas yield. The present research advances the understanding of the biochemical methane potential (BMP) and the chemical characteristics of manure collected year-round from sequential stages of the liquid manure management chain of commercial dairy cow and pig farms. To this end, manure samples from six livestock farms in Germany were analyzed. The results showed that changes in chemical composition during storage led to a 20.5% decrease in the BMP of dairy manure from the barn to outdoor storage. For fattening pig manure samples, there was a 39.5% decrease in the BMP from intermediate to outdoor storage. An analysis of BMP according to manure age showed that pig manure degrades faster than dairy manure; the importance of promptly feeding manure to the biogas plant in order to avoid significant CH4 emission losses and reduction in energy producing capacity was highlighted. The best BMP predictors for dairy manure were the contents of dry matter, volatile solids and lignin, whereas best BMP predictors for pig manure were dry matter and volatile fatty acid (VFA) content. Prediction models performed well for samples from outdoor storages; refinements for predicting BMP of less aged samples presenting lower chemical variability would be necessary.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biofuels
  • Cattle
  • Farms
  • Female
  • Lignin
  • Manure* / analysis
  • Methane* / analysis
  • Swine


  • Manure
  • Methane
  • Biofuels
  • Lignin